The New Orleans Pelicans are still searching for their leader

The New Orleans Pelicans have a leadership problem. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
The New Orleans Pelicans have a leadership problem. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports /

One of the biggest problems the New Orleans Pelicans are facing is their lack of a reliable leader

The emotional rollercoaster that is 2021 is continuing for the New Orleans Pelicans. After a soul-crushing defeat to the lowly 8-19 Detriot Pistons, many fans are looking to divvy up the blame pie.

We touched on it earlier today, some fans want to blame Stan Van Gundy, claiming that the game has passed him by. Others want to blame David Griffin’s questionable roster decisions during this past offseason, and no one wants to blame the players.

As we wrote earlier, I believe that the players are a part of the problem that no one is talking about, but it’s not necessarily their fault. See, the Pelicans took a gamble this offseason by letting their leader Jrue Holiday go via trade.

To this day, I still believe that was the right decision, but let’s face it, it’s left this young team with a leadership void their still searching to fill. It’s becoming a factor during this regular season.

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Looking at the New Orleans Pelicans’ concerning leadership carousel

Over the course of the season, the Pelicans have tried to be lead by a few different people. At the start of the year, it seemed like Stan Van Gundy was going to be the team’s leader. To many, his presence felt like the young Pelicans have finally gotten a safety net in a coach who will push them, but also support them.

However, you won’t win games in the NBA if your head coach is your best leader, and that’s caused the Pelicans to search for their leader on the court. In David Griffin’s mind, leadership could come from veteran acquisitions Steven Adams and Eric Bledsoe, but Adams isn’t an alpha male, and Bledsoe is underperforming.

That’s when the Pelicans turned to Brandon Ingram who looked like an MVP candidate to start the season. The problem is when Ingram’s leading the team, players like Lonzo Ball flounder in out of position roles, and Ingram starts to play hero ball.

Since then recent spells have seen point guard Lonzo Ball, and 1st overall pick Zion Williamson start to shoulder the load. Both showcase some intriguing intangibles, but neither is old or vocal enough to lead.

So who is the leader of the New Orleans Pelicans? That is the question the team is still trying to figure out. It takes time, but it certainly won’t come without effort. That means the Pelicans need to play better than they did last night and start deciding who’s going to be the guy. Once that happens, maybe then the team can turn their inconsistent season around.

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